Connie Whitfield Wells was presented the 2019 Community Service Award by the Carolina Patriots Daughters of the American Revolution Chapter in Mount Olive.
To qualify for this, the recipient had to contribute to the community in an outstanding manner through cultural, educational, humanitarian, patriotic, historical and citizenship endeavors throughout their life. Wells served 27 years in the U.S. Navy, retiring with the rank of captain. In 2015, in her retirement years, she spearheaded the founding of a community service center to serve the area in which she was born and raised.
Wells led residents on a mission to serve others with a nonprofit, multi-purpose community center, establishing the Rones Chapel Area Community Center. The vision of the center is to provide a place for healthy, body, mind and spiritual activities with an emphasis on the inclusiveness of the ethnic, racial, cultural and spiritual diversity of the area’s population. Wells deemed it a priority to encourage the development of a cohesive community.
The community center is intended to be multi-generational with programs to serve the entire community over time. The purpose is to develop programs for the area, complementing and supporting other programs without duplication. In addition to programs developed, the organization partners with local nonprofits, schools, businesses, and county and state government offices to offer educational and community-oriented opportunities. The center will host meetings, events, informational activities and other services provided to the community.
Rones Chapel Area Community Center is located in the historic Cobb School. This circa 1920 one-room school building is located on N.C. 403 near its intersection of Rones Chapel Road and Summerlin’s Crossroads Road in the Rones Chapel community of Duplin County. The old school house is located about 2 miles east of Mount Olive’s town limits. As part of the overall effort, the building has been improved and preserved to continue to serve the community.
As a result of all that Wells has accomplished in the past few years, club members said she was well deserving of this recognition and special award. The Daughters of the American Revolution is a nonprofit nonpolitical women’s volunteer service organization dedicated to promoting historic preservation, education and patriotism.